The Primary Years
The IB Primary Years Programme (PYP) is designed for students aged 4 to 11. It focuses on the development of the whole child as an inquirer, both in the classroom and in the world outside. It is a framework guided by six interdisciplinary themes of global significance, explored using knowledge and skills derived from six subjects areas, as well as interdisciplinary skills, with a powerful emphasis on inquiry. The PYP is flexible enough to accommodate the demands of most national or local curriculums and provides the best preparation for students to engage in the IB Middle Years Programme.
The IB Primary Years Programme
- addresses students’ academic, social and emotional well-being
- encourages students to develop independence and to take responsibility for their own learning
- supports students’ efforts to gain understanding of the world and to function comfortably within it
- helps students establish personal values as a foundation upon which international-mindedness will develop and flourish.
The six subject areas identified within the IB Primary Years Programme
- social studies
- personal, social and physical education
In addition all PYP students have the opportunity to learn more than one language from the age of seven.
The most significant and distinctive feature of the IB Primary Years Programme is the six transdisciplinary themes. These themes provide IB World Schools with the opportunity to incorporate local and global issues into the curriculum and effectively allow students to “step up” beyond the confines of learning within subject areas.
- Who we are
- Where we are in place and time
- How we express ourselves
- How the world works
- How we organize ourselves
- Sharing the planet
These transdisciplinary themes help teachers to develop a programme of inquiries–investigations into important ideas, identified by the schools, and requiring a high level of involvement on the part of the students. These inquiries are substantial, in-depth and usually last for several weeks.
Since these ideas relate to the world beyond the school, students see their relevance and connect with it in an engaging and challenging way. Students who learn in this way begin to reflect on their roles and responsibilities as learners and become actively involved with their education. All students will come to realise that that a unit of inquiry involves them in in-depth exploration of an important idea, and that the teacher will collect evidence of how well they understand that idea. They will expect to be able to work in a variety of ways, on their own and in groups, to allow them to learn to their best advantage.